DAME Esther Rantzen has been announced as the headline speaker for the third Gibraltar Literary Festival this November.
This year’s event will be the biggest yet with four days of talks from distinguished novelists, historians, biographers and public figures.
TV celebrity Rantzen will share experiences from her lifelong involvement with charities including Childline and The Silver Line – which she established.
Taking place from November 12-15, the event will feature a lecture from John Goodall, editor of Country Life, about the magazine and the history of its architectural coverage.
Elsewhere, Professor Ashley Jackson will discuss Gibraltar’s role during the age of imperial travel, Professor Robert Goodwin will speak on ‘Spain at the Centre of the World, 1519-1628’ and Dr Caroline Campbell – a curator at the National Gallery – will cast her eye over Italian Renaissance painting.
Meanwhile, the biography of Haile Selassie, Emperor of Ethiopia and controversial historical figure, will be presented by his great-nephew Prince Asfa-Wossen Asserate, who knew the emperor well.
Interestingly, the Emperor stayed at the Rock Hotel on his way into exile in Britain in 1936.
There will also be lectures from Michelin-star Lebanese chef Greg Malouf, Scottish journalist John Carlin, an international political correspondent for El Pais, and Anthony Sattin, an expert on the Middle East.
Professor Andrew Lambert of King’s College London will talk about Gibraltar and the Royal Navy in World War II – an address he also gave at The Gibraltar Lecture at The Blenheim Palace Festival of Literature, Film and Music.
There are many more great lectures to be enjoyed across various venues, and further writers will be added to the line-up.
Tickets and a preliminary programme will be available shortly.
Minister for Tourism, Samantha Sacramento, said: “The Gibraltar International Literary Festival has become an important part of Gibraltar’s calendar and has proved a success in opening up the Rock as a major cultural venue to the rest of Europe.
“We are doing well with this Government’s strategy of creating niche events and leading on events- led tourism.
“This particular event has not only established itself locally but is also growing in popularity abroad and we continue to market it vigorously.”